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HikerJohn
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HikerJohn
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 9:33 am 
This is an interesting idea-- hikers were given a citation and fined (nominal amount) for behaving stupidly and requiring rescue. I'd be okay with this (better than charging rescueees for the cost of their rescue. Not sure what I would set at the criteria, but if you venture into the back woods, don't have adequate equipment for your adventure (or training), and ended up putting others at risk, you should go stand in front of a judge and acknowledge your stupidity... https://www.westernjournal.com/hikers-trapped-cliffside-call-help-hours-long-rescue-slapped-criminal-charges/ Thoughts?? Maybe the starting point is something like this https://hikesafe.com/the-code which is similar to the skier's responsibility code

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Cyclopath
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 9:36 am 
We've had several threads about going after hikers' money in the last month already.

fourteen410
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Randito
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 9:51 am 
The fines levied were "slap on the wrist" level. I'm sure the fines didn't even cover court costs for the criminal proceedings, much less defraying any costs incurred conducting the rescue. I suppose the next misguided hikers that do something this dumb will try harder to self-rescue, perhaps being maimed or killed as a result.

RumiDude
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Kim Brown
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 11:15 am 
New Hampshire has done this for quite some time

"..living on the east side of the Sierra world be ideal - except for harsher winters and the chance of apocalyptic fires burning the whole area." Bosterson, NWHiker's marketing expert
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thunderhead
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 11:32 am 
The hordes of unprepared tourists out of Boston and NYC are never going to know this happened, and it will thus have 0 impact either way.

Bootpathguy, Chief Joseph
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kiliki
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kiliki
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 12:10 pm 
I think that Hike Safe card is really interesting. It's a nominal cost and funds go to SAR.
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The hordes of unprepared tourists out of Boston and NYC are never going to know this happened, and it will thus have 0 impact either way.
A quick Google news search shows this was covered in the NYC papers and national media as well, so I imagine lots of people did hear about it.

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Kim Brown
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 12:29 pm 
I like the Hiker Safety Code, which is related to that card. https://hikesafe.com/the-code It can still be a hard call; some people may not have full capacity to understand some things do have a right to hike, and may get into trouble. I'm talking about someone who might have a different mental capacity than those who might be judging them for imposing fees (those those on the internet who judge them harshly). I'm not saying that is the case here; just an observation.

"..living on the east side of the Sierra world be ideal - except for harsher winters and the chance of apocalyptic fires burning the whole area." Bosterson, NWHiker's marketing expert
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Cyclopath
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 12:50 pm 
kiliki wrote:
A quick Google news search shows this was covered in the NYC papers and national media as well, so I imagine lots of people did hear about it.
People heard about the pandemic, that's why everybody wore a mask and got their vaccine. agree.gif

Bootpathguy
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neek
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 1:43 pm 
But what message did they get? That a rescue results in public humiliation? Or that it only costs $248?

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texasbb
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 3:51 pm 
neek wrote:
Or that it only costs $248?
Plus a criminal record. Not sure what I think about this. The prospect of criminal charges might be more likely to make me delay a truly needed SAR call than even the prospect of a large bill. "Reckless" seems awfully subjective.

Krylon
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Randito
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 4:12 pm 
texasbb wrote:
neek wrote:
Or that it only costs $248?
Plus a criminal record. Not sure what I think about this. The prospect of criminal charges might be more likely to make me delay a truly needed SAR call than even the prospect of a large bill. "Reckless" seems awfully subjective.
Under NH law, since they didn't use a weapon recklessly, it's a misdemeanor. https://law.justia.com/codes/new-hampshire/2017/title-lxii/chapter-631/section-631-3/ They would still need to answer yes to the employment question: "Have you ever been convicted of a crime?"

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altasnob
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 6:09 pm 
Randito wrote:
I'm sure the fines didn't even cover court costs for the criminal proceedings, much less defraying any costs incurred conducting the rescue.
A large chunk of misdemeanor cases in Washington are resolved via a diversion or some other resolution that is no jail and a fine of less than $248. So if you think it's not worth charging an offense if you are not breaking even on court costs better reduce criminal prosecutions in Washington by 33%
Randito wrote:
Under NH law, since they didn't use a weapon recklessly, it's a misdemeanor. https://law.justia.com/codes/new-hampshire/2017/title-lxii/chapter-631/section-631-3/
We (and every state) have basically the same law. Ours is called Reckless Endangerment and if a prosecutor here had a bee in their bonnet they could charge people in Washington with a criminal offense if they think their stupidity (i.e. "recklessness") puts others in risk (have to endanger someone other than yourself). This is different than the having people pay for their rescue issue and is just a prosecutor trying to hold someone accountable for what they believe is criminal conduct. Similar to the prosecutor in Colorado who charged snowboarders for skiing a run above the freeway tunnel.
Randito wrote:
They would still need to answer yes to the employment question: "Have you ever been convicted of a crime?"
Depends on New Hampshire's vacate/expungement laws. In Washington, once you vacate an offense you are no longer considered convicted of that crime even though you once plead guilty.

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Chief Joseph
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 7:16 pm 
$250 would for sure make me hesitate to call S&R....plus a Criminal Record? Hell no, I would crawl out on my fingernails or die trying. wheelchair.gif

Go placidly amid the noise and waste, and remember what comfort there may be in owning a piece thereof.
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altasnob
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 7:40 pm 
Frankly, I am surprised they plead guilty. Seems like an very winnable case at trial. New Hampshire's Reckless Conduct statute requires your actions place another person in danger of serious bodily injury (same as Washington's law). Experienced rock climbers were called in to rescue the hikers/climbers (they rappelled down from above to make the rescue). How were the rock climbers, who do this stuff for fun, ever in danger of serious bodily injury? Maybe the rescued hikers/climbers had a crappy attorney representing them.

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Cyclopath
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PostThu Sep 15, 2022 8:10 pm 
neek wrote:
But what message did they get? That a rescue results in public humiliation? Or that it only costs $248?
Chief Joseph wrote:
$250 would for sure make me hesitate to call S&R....
There was a daycare center that was tried of parents showing up late to pick up their kids. So they started charging a $25 fee when it happened. It started happening a lot more. People used to think being late was something rude that they shouldn't do, attaching a price changed how they looked at it. Now it's a fee for a service, and $25 is a good price.

CS
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